As of today, I’ve been in Boston for ten days. After all the lead up to getting here, it doesn’t seem possible that this year has finally started.

When last we left off, I was panicking a bit about late financial aid applications and immunization forms. The moral of the story is, I (unsurprisingly) was a little more panicked than was necessary. After much ado, I am indeed here and going through orientation. Everything is not finished (I will be very happy when my financial aid cash advance finally comes through, and even happier when all the extended loan paperwork is taken care of), but I have a Harvard ID card. For now, I’m happy. But let’s back up a little.

After a life-giving week spending time with friends in Pittsburgh and wishing a dear friend good luck in her own next chapter, I flew into Boston Logan on Thursday evening. I managed to pack up pretty much my whole life (besides my book collection) into a large suitcase, a medium suitcase, a carry-on, and a giant backpack. I have one box being shipped to me, but otherwise, I have to pick up everything else here.

I got to my Cambridge apartment fairly late in the evening after some flight shuffling. I fell pretty immediately into bed, which consisted of a futon mattress on the floor with a box fan in the window pointed directly at me. Cambridge is hot in the summer, and we don’t have central air.

On Friday, I finally got to see Cambridge in daylight, and I took a long, meandering walk through the neighborhood. It’s pretty awe-inspiring to live a short walk from this and this. Cambridge is full of history, memorials, huge trees, and old churches. Plus, the Harvard campus is enormous, and a lot of the architecture is really cool.

I’d given myself a lot of time (I didn’t have to be here until Wednesday), so I spent the weekend hanging out, mostly sitting around and sweating before I got my A/C. On Sunday, I walked down to a local farmer’s market, which I have within walking distance three days a week! Yay inexpensive local produce! I’m very happy about that. I also ordered groceries from a delivery service since I don’t have a car, which didn’t end up coming until Tuesday. When they did finally come, I broke in my kitchen by having my first cooking session. Chicken curry success!

Over the course of the several days I had before orientation, I managed to assemble a mattress, bedding set, stack of pillows, and a window A/C unit, most of which I got through Amazon Prime. I still don’t have my bed frame, so I still feel a little like I’m squatting here — curse you, mysterious shipping delays! But that should hopefully come soon.

Once my financial aid comes in (#gradstudentlife), I’ll be able to get a desk and some drawers so everything I own will no longer be crammed into my little city-dweller closet. I’m liking the new place, though — the location is amazing and my roommate’s pretty cool.

I know I’m cheating by making you wait until my next post for info about orientation (it’s good — you’ll like it), but I feel like I should wait until orientation’s over to summarize it. Orientation continues Monday and Tuesday, with class starting on Wednesday. But just to keep you interested, highlights include Harry Potter, a puppy, Merrick Garland, and some CMU pride. Stay tuned!